Painting Project Gone Wrong


I was hoping to get the CNW boxcar done-ish for an operating session at my friend Mike’s tomorrow night (he has an incredible CNW layout). I had already painted the ends to fairly good effect (I wasn’t terribly happy with it but I was willing to live with it). Basically all that was left was giving it a good weathering and that’s where things went wrong. Well maybe the fact that one of my new stirrups had disappeared since I had installed them and painted the ends should have been a warning.

I’m not going to post a picture, things starting going wrong and instead of stepping back and stopping I tried soldiering on things quickly got out of hand. To make things worse while cleaning my airbrush I dropped and lost the trigger spring (because I took it apart wrong).

Luckily the spring is available in an inexpensive repair kit and if I’m forced to put a good spin on things I could use an opportunity to learn techniques on removing paint from models and since I’ll have to repaint it applying decals.

That said I put the question out to the wider group what do you use for stripping paint off models? This model has whatever Accurail uses and primarily enamel paints but has some acrylic matte finish as part of the weathering but I also have some failed painting projects that used acrylic paints that need to be stripped as well.

I’d appreciate it if you could leave a comment with what you use!

Stirrup Step repairs


I started working on replacing broken stirrups on my CNW boxcar project. I’m using Tichy Train Group #3047


It’s my first time doing something like this, the process is pretty straight forward of scraping off the old ones and drilling holes for the new ones. Except I’m having trouble getting my holes drilled at the right spots and I broke my drill bit.

As frustration was building I decided to set the boxcar down and practice on a more simple model… my car shops flat.


I had originally done this with custom bent brass (that in retrospect was too big in diameter) and I think for a beginner it was a good start but while I was at the hobby store last weekend I picked up some of the square stirrups with this project in mind. I tried lining up the Tichy nubs with my existing holes but they were too high and again not straight. I decided to try cutting off the Tichy nubs just gluing them over the holes and viola a pretty good result.


After the glue dried I was a little surprised how sturdy the stirrup got because it had been so flimsy getting it off the sprue and gluing it on. I suppose that’s a nice feature though.

I’ll need to repaint the car but I haven’t been terribly pleased with my first weathering attempt that’s probably not a bad idea anyway

Boxcar Improvements

Project, Trains

I have a couple of Accurail boxcars that I built from kits from early in my hobby that while nothing special are still pretty decent pieces. However as I learned more about railroad history they kind of fell out of favor since their roof walks dated them before my era. Incidentally they are from a phase I went through where I was collecting a boxcar for each railroad that was taken over by the UP. This is as far as I got.


As I was digging through my parts/project box the other day I found them and decided to take a stab at updating them to a more modern era by removing their roofwalks. I figure worse case scenario I start with broken cars and end up with unusable salvage attempts. Best case scenario I get some more operable boxcars. As you can see from the picture they are already in a bit of a sorry state, wheels, couplers, and sometimes trucks were given homes on other more modern pieces.


It appears the MKT box is going to be a little bit more work because of the larger holes and molding around them. As the CNW is a little more local and I have friends that model it I’m starting with that one.


After I the holes plugged the next step is going to be broken stirrup steps (get it, next step is steps 🙂 ) as two of them are missing one or more.